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Encouragement (4 of 8)
Jesus Christ was the most encouraging person to ever live. Should not those of us who follow Him be encouragers? Give it!
Christ is spoken of as our encourager in II Thessalonians 2: 16, 17: ''Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation [encouragement] and good hope by grace, comfort [encourage] your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.'' If He does it for us we should do it for others.
Encouragement doesn't have to be earned. Praise does.
Encouragement energizes us. Give it and keep on giving it.
There is a special bamboo in China that serves as an example. Once planted the bamboo does not grow for four years. All during those four years it has to be watered and cultivated, but it doesn't grow. The fifth year it does. It often reaches a height of 90 feet. If neglected during the first 4 years it never grows.
Encouragement is needed at all times. If you have been giving it without any apparent results don't stop cultivating.
I. A DEFINITION OF ENCOURAGEMENT
The word is a compound of the prefix EN, meaning to put in or into; and the word courage, meaning confidence, strength. To ''encourage,'' then, literally means to put courage into someone.
The prefix DIS negates or reverses the word it is attached to. ''Dissatisfied'' means ''not satisfied.'' So, to discourage a person is to take courage away from him.
An encouraging person is pleasant to be around because he makes you feel built up, strengthened, IN-couraged by his presence and words. An encouraging person supports and strengthens, rather than weakening or tearing down.
The origin of our word courage comes from the Latin COUR which refers to the condition of the heart. King Richard was so bold that it earned him the name ''Richard de Lion,'' literally, ''Richard the Lion Hearted.'' That is, King Richard the man with the heart of a lion.
We, as babies, are born w ...
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